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Sunday, June 9, 2013

A cooking weekend--with a recipe

Sometimes I think I could be a hermit, stay home all day to write and cook. Trouble is, of course, I'd have to have people to eat my cooking. But this weekend, I cooked to my heart's content. Last night for dinner, I had salmon marinated in maple syrup, mustard and  bit of salt. You're supposed to grill it on a cedar plan, and I'm sure that would be better but just for me I did it on the Jenn-Air grill. And got it just right--barely cooked in the middle. Got the recipe on a recent Mystery Lovers Blog so you can easily look it up.
I roasted asparagus just to have it--darn! Overdid it again, and this time I really tried to watch. I boiled corn, though Jacob has decided he doesn't like corn. Let's see--that adds to a list of recent dislikes that now includes blueberries and blackberries, which he used to love.
Today I made green pea hummus for dinner tonight. Basically a mix of store-bought plain hummus, a pkg. of frozen baby peas, olive oil, lime juice,, bay leaves, salt and cayenne. Next time I'd perk it up with a little more lime juice and a pinch more cayenne--I'm always cautious when using that. I got it from our local newspaper and no source was quote, but I bet you could find something similar on Google. It was tonight's appetizer for my gluten- and dairy-free friends, along with gluten-free rice crackers. It would be good with veggies, too.
Tonight I fixed an old-stand-by. Years ago a friend gave me a cookbook, A Jug of Wine, by Morrison Wood. Mr. Wood subsequently published another cookbook, though I forget the title and don't own it. But from friend Sally's copy I got the recipe for Wine Casserole. When I made it, it came out so much like Sloppy Joe that's what we called it. You can either eat it on a bun or out of a bowl. It was a staple on our table--cheap for a single mom to feed four kids, and they loved it.
Megan wrote me some time ago for the recipe (before my cookbook came out) and she made it. Brandon, her husband, said, "It's good, but it's not Sloppy Joe." Megan wrote caustically to say apparently she was the only child raised to think wine was an essential ingredient of Sloppy Joe. Here's the recipe (and it doesn't hurt if you change it a bit, leave something out, etc.)

Judy’s sloppy Joe

1 lb. ground beef
1 15-oz. can of beans (any kind you want), rinsed and drained
½ c. chopped onion
½ c. diced celery
2 Tbsp. bacon drippings (If you can bring yourself to use it in this health-conscious age, use vegetable oil, but the bacon flavor really makes a difference.)
1½ c. ketchup
1½ Tbsp. Worcestershire
Dash of Tabasco
1 tsp. salt
⅛ tsp. pepper
¼ tsp. oregano
¼ c. dry red wine
1 Tbsp. A-1 sauce

Cook onion in bacon drippings. Add beef and brown. Add remaining ingredients and simmer 20 to 30 minutes.
Again, a perfect dish for my gluten-free friends, and Elizabeth loves it. For four of us plus Jacob I made a double batch because leftovers are so good.
And for dessert? Old-fashioned root-beer floats (some made with dairy-free ice cream)
A meal to recall childhood.

As usual, in spite of good intentions, Ii forgot to take pictures. Sloppy Joy really isn't very photogenic anyway.


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